Aston Martin have announced that Nico Hulkenberg has been appointed as their official Reserve and Development Driver for 2021 season.
Having previously raced for the team under their old Force India name in two separate stints between 2012-16 and as a replacement for Sergio Perez at Silverstone then Lance Stroll at Nurburgring last season Hulkenberg feels “great” in having signed the deal with “plenty of notice”.
Speaking on his decision to re-join the team under their new Aston Martin branding, Hulkenberg said; “First of all, it’s great to get this deal signed up with plenty of notice – last year, I didn’t have quite as much time to prepare before jumping in the car!”
Although he hopes that Stroll and Sebastian Vettel enjoy “uninterrupted seasons” in 2021, Hulkenberg has iterated that “the team knows it can rely on me to step in and do an excellent job, and I’m fully prepared to take on that challenge.”
Aston Martin CEO and Team Principal, Otmar Szafnauer is “delighted” to welcome Hulkenberg back in an official reserve role, instead of as a late emergency replacement on race weekends as happened in 2020.
Acknowledging the ongoing impact of Coronavirus pandemic in this decision to appoint a Reserve Driver, Szafnauer said; “In these difficult times, the requirement for a capable and experienced reserve driver is especially important.”
Szafnauer also spoke of how Hulkenberg proved last season that he can deliver even at short notice, saying; “Nico proved last year that he could jump in the car and perform superbly at a moment’s notice…”
The 56 year-old now believes that “additional scope for preparation and integration”, Hulkenberg can be relied on to deliver an “excellent job.”